Hood River Distillers (HRD), Oregon largest’s distillery, is mostly likely best known to those outside of the Pacific Northwest for its one time ownership of the Pendleton Canadian whisky label. This label was sold to Becle S.A.B. de C.V., the parent company of tequila giant Jose Cuervo, back in late 2017, and since that time HRD has been somewhat without a primary whiskey brand. It now looks to be rectifying that with news of the launch of Easy Rider Kentucky Straight Bourbon Whiskey.
Easy Rider, according to those behind it, has roots in HRD’s home state, and was acquired by them last year. In looking to bring the brand in front of a larger consumer crowd it was opted to change the liquid to a four year old Kentucky bourbon sourced from an unnamed distillery. This bourbon was then cut with “glacier-fed spring water from Mount Hood” before being bottled up at 80 proof.
“Ever since the sale of Pendleton Whisky, we’ve been looking for a lifestyle brand that would fit into the Hood River portfolio,” said Casey Armstrong, Senior Brand Manager, Hood River Distillers, in a prepared statement. “The Easy Rider consumer knows that life is a journey, they are spontaneous and adventurous by nature, but also know what they want when they’ve reached their destination. Our track record with Pendleton shows that we know how to connect with these consumers to drive sales. We’re eager to get started.”
Easy Rider Kentucky Straight Bourbon Whiskey (image via Hood River Distillers)
Plans currently call for Easy Rider to price around $25 per 750 ml bottle, and to initially be available on the west coast as of this month. HRD, for those unfamiliar with it, was founded in 1934 and has a number of other whiskeys in its portfolio, including Trail’s End bourbon and McCarthy’s single malt whiskey.
Nino Kilgore-Marchetti is the founder and editor-in-chief of The Whiskey Wash, an award winning whiskey lifestyle website dedicated to informing and entertaining consumers about whisk(e)y on a global level. As a whisk(e)y journalist, expert and judge he has written about the subject extensively, been interviewed in various media outlets and...